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If a newly hatched orchid mantis isn’t both quick and cunning, it’s likely to end up an easy lunch for a larger predator. And since orchid mantises are unfussy carnivores that aren’t above cannibalism, even members of their own species pose an imminent threat. In this excerpt from BBC’s Life Story series, a newborn mantis must employ some spectacular inborn self-defence skills against a hungry jumping spider if it wants to survive its first day.
Narrator: David Attenborough
Film and visual culture
With human help, AIs are generating a new aesthetics. The results are trippy
From manners to mud – two women recall coming of age in Victorian London
Gender and identity
The joys and complications of raising a baby without gender in a binary world
Like pop music, humpback whale songs spread, mutate, and fall out of fashion
The ancient world
Why did the Romans create a massive, entirely impractical map of their empire?
Human rights and justice
The staggering cruelty of Ireland’s Church-run ‘mother and baby homes’
History of ideas
Peter Singer charts the path from Hegelian philosophy to Marxist revolution
War and peace
A peace activist’s harrowing account of nuclear war is a visceral case for disarmament
An interstellar voyage explores the ‘paradox’ of twins separated by light years